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Tony Hillerman Prize Contest opens

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Tony Hillerman Prize Contest opens

Welcome to the Tony Hillerman Prize for Best First Mystery Set in the Southwest Competition!

WWA is pleased to again announce its sponsorship of the Tony Hillerman Prize for Best First Mystery set in the Southwest.

Please read all of the rules and guidelines before submitting your entry. You can find the complete rules and guidelines at us.macmillan.com/minotaurbooks/tonyhillermanprize.

To enter, you must either complete the below form and upload an electronic file of your manuscript or print the entry form and submit it with a physical copy of your manuscript. Click here to download the form.

  • Before entering, please ensure that your manuscript is formatted as follows:
  • 1) The manuscript must be either a Microsoft Word document or a PDF
  • 2) Text must be double spaced
  • 3) Pages must be numbered consecutively from beginning to end
  • 4) The Manuscript must be saved as “Manuscript Title_Entrant Name”
  • 5) Do not include Entrant name in the manuscript itself.

To be considered for the 2018 competition, all submissions must be received by 11:59pm on January 2, 2018.

If you have questions or need further clarification regarding the rules and guidelines of this competition, you may contact us at tonyhillermanprize@stmartins.com

Thank you for participating, and good luck!



Fields marked with an asterisk * are required.




  • ELIGIBILITY: The Hillerman Mystery Contest (the “Contest“) is open only to people who are 18 years of age or older and of the legal age of majority in the jurisdiction in which they reside and, as of the date of entry and the date on which the prize is offered (if applicable), are a legal resident of one of the 50 United States, the District of Columbia or Canada (excluding Quebec). In addition, to be eligible to enter the Contest, each potential entrant must not be the author of a published mystery novel and must not be a party to any agreement with a publisher pursuant to which a mystery novel written by the entrant may be published. For purposes of these Official Rules, “mystery novel” means a book of fiction in which murder or another serious crime or crimes is at the heart of the story, and emphasis is on the solution rather than the details of the crime.of at least 40,000 words and “published” means a work that has been published or made publicly available, in whole or part, as a print book, e-book or in any other media. The publication on an entrant’s website of a single one-chapter excerpt from a work will not result in the work being deemed to be “published” for purposes of these Official Rules so long as (a) the excerpt is the only portion of the work that has been published or publicly released, (b) the excerpt is not for sale to the public, and (c) the number of words in the excerpt does not exceed 7,500 words or 10% of the total number of words in the work as a whole. Employees of St. Martin’s Press, LLC (“Sponsor“) or any of Sponsor’s affiliates, and members of the immediate family or household of any such employee, are not eligible. Eligibility determinations will be made by Sponsor in its discretion and will be final and binding. Void in Quebec and where prohibited by law.
  • HOW TO ENTER: The entry period for the Contest begins at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time (ET) on June 21, 2016 and ends at 11:59 p.m. ET on January 2, 2017 (the “Entry Period“). To enter the Contest, entrants must submit a manuscript of a fictional work written by the entrant (“Manuscript“) that complies with the following submission guidelines: (a) the Manuscript must be written in English and must be book length (approximately 60,000 words or 220 pages, using standard margins of approximately one inch and standard 10 or 12 point typeface style, or longer); (b) murder or another serious crime or crimes must be at the heart of the story contained in the Manuscript and the story should focus on the solving of the crime(s) rather than the details of such crime(s); (c) the story’s primary setting must be one or more of the following states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas and/or Utah; and (d) the Manuscript must comply with all requirements set forth in these Official Rules, including the Submission Guidelines set forth in Section 3 below. Sponsor’s determination as to whether an entrant’s Manuscript complies with these Official Rules will be final and binding. There are two ways to enter the Contest.

Online Entry: To enter the Sweepstakes online, during the Entry Period, entrants must visit the website located at us.macmillan.com/minotaurbooks/tonyhillermanprize (the “Website“) and follow the on-screen entry instructions. Each entrant who enters online will be required to upload his or her Manuscript to the Website and complete and submit the Contest entry form. Online entries must comply with all technical specifications provided on the Website (including those relating to approved file formats for the Manuscript) and must be submitted and received by Sponsor prior to the conclusion of the Entry Period. Entry times will be determined using Sponsor’s computer, which will be the official clock for the Contest. Normal time rates, if any, charged by the entrant’s Internet service provider will apply. In the event of a dispute regarding the identity of an entrant, the entry will be deemed made by the authorized account holder of the e-mail address submitted at the time of entry (i.e., the natural person who is assigned to an e-mail address by an Internet access provider, on-line service provider or other organization responsible for assigning e-mail addresses for the domain associated with the submitted e-mail address).

Entry by Mail or Delivery: To enter the Contest by mail or delivery, entrants must send to Sponsor at the address specified in Section 12 below a package containing a printed copy of the entrant’s Manuscript and a legibly completed Contest entry form. The package must be sent either via U.S. or Canadian mail with proper postage affixed, or by a major courier that regularly delivers to New York City (for example, FedEx or U.P.S.) with all delivery charges prepaid. Contest entry forms will be made available on the Website and in some promotional materials for the Contest. Entrants can also request a printed copy of the Contest entry form by sending Sponsor a self-addressed, stamped envelope as described in Section 12 below. Mailed entries must be postmarked or provided to the courier service by 11:59 p.m. ET on January 2, 2017 and must be received by Sponsor by no later than January 16, 2017.

General Entry Terms and Conditions: Completion of the Contest entry form will require that the entrant provide his or her name, address, e-mail address (optional for entrants submitting the Contest entry form by mail or delivery), telephone number and such other information as Sponsor may require. There is a limit of one entry per person. Each Manuscript may be submitted only once. If a particular Manuscript is submitted more than once, Sponsor will have the right to disqualify all entrants who submitted the Manuscript. Manuscripts will not be returned. Each entrant must keep a copy of his or her Manuscript for his or her own records. Sponsor will not be responsible for lost, damaged, stolen or mislaid Manuscripts.

 SUBMISSION GUIDELINES: All Manuscripts submitted in the Contest must comply with the following guidelines: (i) the Manuscript must be double-spaced and typed with pages numbered consecutively from beginning to end; (ii) the first page of the Manuscript must be a cover page containing the title of the Manuscript, the entrant’s name, address, e-mail address and telephone number, and the entrant’s previous writing credits, if any; (iii) the second page of the Manuscript must be a title page containing only the title of the Manuscript and the entrant’s name, and no other information; (iv) the entrant’s name must not appear anywhere within the Manuscript other than on cover page and the title page as provided in this Section 3; (v) Manuscripts submitted online must be uploaded to the Website in a single electronic file in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF file format, and named in accordance with the following naming convention: “[MANUSCRIPT TITLE] – [FULL NAME OF ENTRANT]”; (vi) Manuscripts submitted by mail or courier must not be bound; (vii) the Manuscript must be original and have been written solely by the entrant; (viii) the entrant must own 100% of the copyright in the Manuscript; (ix) the Manuscript must not previously have been published or won any award; (x) the Manuscript must not contain any material that violates or infringes upon the rights of any third party, including without limitation any copyright, trademark or rights of privacy or publicity, or that is defamatory, unlawful or in violation of or contrary to any applicable law or regulation; and (xi) the Manuscript must not contain any material that Sponsor, in its sole discretion, deems inappropriate for public viewing. By submitting a Manuscript, the entrant represents and warrants that he or she has complied with all of the foregoing requirements and has obtained all permissions, licenses and consents that are necessary for the submission of the Manuscript in the Contest and to verify compliance with the foregoing requirements. Each entrant agrees to provide to Sponsor at Sponsor’s request copies of all such permissions, licenses and consents and, if requested by Sponsor, to obtain additional permissions, licenses and consents from the applicable parties in a form specified by Sponsor. Sponsor reserves the right in its sole discretion to disqualify any Manuscript that Sponsor determines does not comply with these guidelines, to make such changes to any Manuscript as are necessary to make it compliant, or to require the entrant to do so.
  • SUBMISSION RELEASE: By submitting a Manuscript, and in consideration of the review by the Judges (as defined in Section 5) of such Manuscript, each entrant irrevocably agrees to the following: The entrant understands and agrees that Sponsor does not undertake to consider the Manuscript in confidence. The entrant acknowledges that Sponsor must disclose the Manuscript to various employees of Sponsor, and may disclose the Manuscript to those outside Sponsor’s employ, in connection with the judging and winner selection process pursuant to these Official Rules. It is understood that no confidential or fiduciary relationship is entered into by reason of Sponsor’s receipt or consideration of the entrant’s Manuscript. The entrant’s submission is made with the understanding that the Judges will give his or her Manuscript such consideration as it merits based on the Judging Criteria (as defined in Section 5) in Sponsor’s sole and final judgment. Other than with respect to the Publishing Offer (as defined in Section 6), if any, made to the Grand Prize winner, Sponsor will not be obligated to consider or use any Manuscript or to offer, negotiate with or enter into an agreement with any entrant pertaining to his or her Manuscript or otherwise. The entrant acknowledges that no obligation of any kind is assumed by, or may be implied against, Sponsor unless and until such time, if ever, as a formal written contract has been entered into between the entrant and Sponsor. The entrant shall not be entitled to any compensation from Sponsor with respect to the review by the Judges of his or her Manuscript. Consideration of the Manuscript for purposes of the Contest is not an admission by Sponsor or the Judges of the novelty, propriety or originality of the entrant’s Manuscript. The entrant acknowledges that other persons, including Sponsor’s employees, may have previously originated and/or submitted to Sponsor or to others, or made public, or may hereafter originate and/or submit or make public, similar or identical material, which Sponsor will have the right to use. The entrant understands that he or she will not be entitled to any compensation because of Sponsor’s use of such other similar or identical material. Without limitation of the foregoing, Sponsor may use, without any payment or other obligation whatsoever to the entrant, any part of his or her Manuscript, and any idea or concept contained therein, that (a) is similar or identical to, or contains significant elements encompassed in, a concept that is under consideration or in development by Sponsor before or at the time of the submission, (b) is not unique, novel, original, and concrete so as to be entitled to intellectual property protection under applicable laws, (c) has been made public by anyone at the time of its submission to Sponsor, or otherwise is in the public domain, (d) would be freely usable by a third person if it had not been accepted as a submission or the subject of any agreement, (e) is not protected by copyright law in the pertinent territory, or (f) is similar or identical to, or contains significant elements encompassed in, an idea, concept or material that is independently created by Sponsor or its employees or contractors or those of third parties. Sponsor shall be entitled to all rights of exploitation in accordance with all applicable laws, in any ideas, concepts or materials that are created independently by Sponsor, even if similar or identical to the entrant’s Manuscript. The entrant agrees that his or her agreement to the foregoing is a prerequisite to Sponsor’s review of his or her Manuscript.
  • WINNER SELECTION AND NOTIFICATION: Following the conclusion of the Entry Period, one potential Grand Prize winner will be selected by judges designated by Sponsor (the “Judges“) from among all eligible entries received during the Entry Period, by assessing each Manuscript based on the following criteria (the “Judging Criteria“), weighted as indicated: publishable quality of manuscript (60%); creativity (20%); and originality (20%). In the event of a tie, the tie will be broken based on the higher score in the “publishable quality of manuscript” category. Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to select one or more additional Grand Prize winners if, in the sole opinion of Sponsor and/or the Judges, the quality of the eligible entries submitted warrants selection of more than one Grand Prize winner. Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to not select any winner if, in the sole opinion of Sponsor and/or the Judges, none of the Manuscripts submitted are of publishable quality. The odds of winning depend on the number and quality of eligible entries received. Potential winner(s) will be notified by mail, telephone and/or e-mail, at Sponsor’s discretion on or about May 5, 2017. Each potential winner is subject to verification of eligibility. If a potential winner cannot be reached or does not respond within 10 days of the initial notification attempt, or if any attempted notification is returned as undeliverable, or if a potential winner is deemed ineligible by Sponsor, or if a potential winner does not otherwise comply with these Official Rules and/or cannot accept the Publishing Offer as awarded for any reason, then the potential winner may be disqualified and an alternate winner may, at Sponsor’s discretion, be selected from among the remaining eligible entries as specified in these Official Rules (in which case the foregoing provisions will apply to such newly-selected entrant).
  • PRIZE: One Grand Prize will be offered (unless Sponsor elects in its discretion to increase the quantity of Grand Prizes offered). The Grand Prize consists of an offer to have the winner’s Manuscript published by Sponsor under the imprint name Minotaur Books on terms and conditions determined by Sponsor (the “Publishing Offer“). The terms of the Publishing Offer will be as set forth in Sponsor’s standard form author agreement and will include an advance against future royalties (if any) in the amount of $10,000. Any terms of the Publishing Offer not specified in the printed text of Sponsor’s standard form author’s agreement will be determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion. The entrant may request reasonable changes to the Publishing Offer, but Sponsor will not be obligated to agree to any such changes. The Grand Prize winner will not receive any part of the advance unless and until the standard form author’s agreement has been signed by both parties. If the Grand Prize winner has not signed and returned to Sponsor the standard form author agreement within 30 days after the date on which Sponsor provides the standard form author agreement to the winner, the Publishing Offer will be deemed to have been withdrawn and Sponsor will have no further obligation or liability to the Grand Prize winner. No substitution, cash redemption or transfer of the right to receive the Grand Prize is permitted. The Grand Prize consists only of those items expressly specified in these Official Rules as being part of the Grand Prize. Sponsor and the Judges will not provide any evaluation of or commentary on Manuscripts submitted in connection with the Contest. All expenses or costs associated with the acceptance or use of the Grand Prize are the responsibility of the winner. All federal, state, provincial/territorial and local taxes on the value of the Grand Prize, if applicable, are the responsibility of the winner. FOR U.S. RESIDENTS: An IRS form 1099 will be issued in the winner’s name if required by law.
  • GRANT OF RIGHTS: By entering the Contest, each entrant, if selected as a potential Grand Prize winner, irrevocably grants to Sponsor and its affiliates, and the successors, agents, licensees, marketing contractors and assigns of each of the foregoing and Western Writers of America (all of the foregoing, the “Contest Entities“) the right to use the entrant’s name, likeness, voice and/or biographical information, and the title of the Manuscript submitted by the entrant, in perpetuity, throughout the world, in all media and formats whether now or later known or developed (including without limitation on Sponsor’s websites and social media channels), for the purpose of announcing the winner(s) and administering and publicizing the Contest and future contests, without further compensation. In addition, by entering the Contest and submitting a Manuscript, the entrant, if selected as a potential Grand Prize winner, irrevocably grants to Sponsor, in perpetuity, the non-exclusive right, and the right to authorize others, to copy, publish, display, distribute, modify, edit, create derivative works based on and otherwise use an excerpt of the entrant’s Manuscript consisting of not more than 7,500 words or 10% of the total number of words in the Manuscript, whichever is greater, throughout the world, in all media and formats whether now or later known or developed (including without limitation on Sponsor’s websites and social media channels), for the purpose of announcing the winner(s) and administering and publicizing the Contest and future contests, without further compensation.
  • RELEASE AND LIMITATION OF LIABILITY: The Contest Entities, all other companies involved in the development or operation of the Contest or the provision of the Grand Prize, and the directors, officers, employees and agents of each of the foregoing (collectively, the “Released Parties“) are not responsible for, and will have no liability for, (a) late, lost, delayed, illegible, stolen, mislaid, damaged, corrupted, postage-due or incomplete entries or Manuscripts, incorrect or inaccurate capture of, damage to, or loss of entries or Manuscripts, or any other human or technical errors of any kind relating to the operation of the Website, communications or attempted communications with any entrant, the submission, collection, storage or processing of entries or Manuscripts or the administration of the Contest, (b) undeliverable e-mails resulting from any form of active or passive e-mail filtering by a user’s Internet service provider and/or e-mail client or for insufficient space in user’s e-mail account to receive e-mail or (c) any damage to any computer system resulting from participation in or accessing or downloading information in connection with the Contest. By entering, each entrant releases and agrees to hold each of the Released Parties harmless from and against any and all claims and liabilities of any kind that the entrant ever had, now has or might in the future have arising out of or relating to the Contest, participation in the Contest, the use of the Website, the Manuscript (including any loss or damage to the Manuscript), the acceptance of the Grand Prize and/or any use of the entrant’s name, likeness, voice and/or biographical information as permitted pursuant to these Official Rules, including without limitation all claims and liabilities based on any violation of the right of privacy or right of publicity, copyright infringement, misappropriation or violation of any other personal or proprietary right. Entrants assume all liability for any injury or damage caused, or claimed to be caused, by participation in the Contest, the Manuscript, the use of the Website, the acceptance of the Grand Prize and/or any use of the entrant’s name, likeness, voice and/or biographical information as permitted pursuant to these Official Rules. The Released Parties are not responsible for any typographical or other error in the printing of the offer, administration of the Contest or in the announcement of the Publishing Offer. In no event will more than one prize be awarded.
  • GENERAL RULES: Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to modify these Official Rules (including without limitation by adjusting any of the dates and/or timeframes stipulated in these Official Rules) or cancel, modify or suspend this Contest at any time in its discretion, including without limitation in the event that a virus, bug, technical problem, entrant fraud or misconduct, or other cause beyond the control of the Sponsor corrupts the administration, integrity, security or proper operation of the Contest or if for any other reason Sponsor is not able to conduct the Contest as planned (including without limitation in the event the operation of the Contest is interfered with by any fire, flood, epidemic, earthquake, explosion, labor dispute or strike, act of God or of public enemy, communications failure, riot or civil disturbance, war (declared or undeclared), terrorist threat or activity, federal, state, provincial/territorial or local law, order or regulation or court order). In the event of termination of the Contest, a notice will be posted on the Website and if Sponsor has received Manuscripts of publishable quality, a winner will be selected in accordance with the procedures set forth in these Official Rules from among all eligible entries received prior to the time of termination. Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to disqualify or prohibit from participating in the Contest any individual who, in Sponsor’s discretion, Sponsor determines or believes (i) has tampered with the entry process, or has undermined the legitimate operation of the Website or the Contest by cheating, hacking, deception or other unfair playing practices, or (ii) has engaged in conduct that annoys, abuses, threatens or harasses any other entrants or any representative of Sponsor, or (iii) has attempted or intends to attempt any of the foregoing. CAUTION: ANY ATTEMPT BY AN ENTRANT TO DELIBERATELY DAMAGE ANY WEBSITE OR UNDERMINE THE LEGITIMATE OPERATION OF THIS CONTEST IS A VIOLATION OF CRIMINAL AND CIVIL LAW. SHOULD SUCH AN ATTEMPT BE MADE, SPONSOR RESERVES THE RIGHT TO SEEK DAMAGES FROM ANY SUCH INDIVIDUAL TO THE FULLEST EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW. The use of agents or automated devices, programs or methods to submit entries is prohibited and Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to disqualify any entry that it believes may have been submitted using such an automated device, program or method. All federal, state, provincial/territorial and local laws and regulations apply. All entry materials become the property of Sponsor and will not be verified or returned. By participating in this Contest, entrants agree to be bound by the Official Rules and the decisions of Sponsor and the judges, which are final and binding in all respects. These Official Rules may not be reprinted or republished in any way without the prior written consent of Sponsor. Sponsor reserves the right to, but is not obligated to, consider for publication Manuscripts submitted by entrants other than the Grand Prize winner.
  • DISPUTES: By entering the Contest, each entrant agrees that, to the maximum extent permitted by applicable law, (a) any and all disputes, claims, and causes of action arising out of or connected with the Contest, the Manuscript or the Publishing Offer, shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of class action (Note: Some jurisdictions do not allow restricting access to class actions. This provision will not apply to you if you live in such a jurisdiction.); and (b) any and all claims, judgments and awards shall be limited to actual out-of-pocket costs incurred, including costs associated with entering the Contest, but in no event attorneys’ fees; and (c) under no circumstances will any entrant be permitted to obtain any award for, and entrant hereby waives all rights to claim, punitive, special, incidental or consequential damages and any and all rights to have damages multiplied or otherwise increased and any other damages, other than for actual out-of-pocket expenses. All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Official Rules, or the rights and obligations of the entrants and Sponsor in connection with the Contest, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with the laws of the State of New York without giving effect to any choice of law or conflict of law rules or provisions that would cause the application of the laws of any jurisdiction other than the State of New York. Any legal proceedings arising out of this Contest or relating to these Official Rules shall be instituted only in the federal or state courts located in the State of New York, waiving any right to trial by jury, and each entrant consents to jurisdiction therein with respect to any legal proceedings or disputes of whatever nature arising under or relating to these rules or the Contest. In the event of any conflict between these Official Rules and any Contest information provided elsewhere (including but not limited in advertising or marketing materials), these Official Rules shall prevail. All entries are subject to verification at any time.
  • USE OF INFORMATION: Sponsor and/or its agents or contractors will collect information regarding Contest entrants via the Website. Such information will be subject to Sponsor’s privacy policy available at http://us.macmillan.com/privacy-notice. By entering the Contest, each entrant agrees that information submitted via the Website therewith may be used as permitted pursuant to such Privacy Policy and may also be used in connection with the administration of the Contest. In addition, each entrant who enters by mail or delivery agrees that Sponsor will have the right to use information submitted by the entrant in connection with the administration of the Contest.
  • REQUESTS FOR WINNER’S NAME, RULES AND ENTRY FORMS: For additional copies of these Official Rules, copies of the Contest entry form and/or the name of the winner (which will be available after approximately May 5, 2017), send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to: Hillerman Mystery Contest, Minotaur Books, c/o St. Martin’s Press, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, New York 10010.
  • SPONSOR:St. Martin’s Press, LLC, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010.

I have read and agree to the above rules.

Stonecrest Books Wins WWA Book Display Contest

Stonecrest Books in Osage Beach, Missouri, at the Lake of the Ozarks, was the winner of the 2017 Western Writers of America Book Display Contest.  More than 200 book stores across the country entered the contest. Participants were asked to create an in-store display highlighting western authors and western musicians and their work. The book stores were also asked to post the picture of their display on social media. 

Stonecrest Books won $500 and was invited to attend the WWA Convention in Kansas City, Missouri, held in late June.  Stonecrest Books General Manager, Carmen Parry accepted the book store’s prize.

WWA announces 2017 Spur Award winners

TUCSON, Arizona – Paul Andrew Hutton’s critically acclaimed The Apache Wars won the 2017 Spur Award for Best Western Historical Nonfiction book, and Taylor Sheridan’s Oscar-nominated screenplay for Hell or High Water won for Best Western Drama Script, Western Writers of America announced.

Winners and finalists were announced Saturday at the Tucson Festival of Books and will be honored June 21-24 in Kansas City, Missouri, at WWA’s convention, during which Pulitzer Prize finalist Louise Erdrich will also be presented the Owen Wister Award for lifetime contributions in Western literature.

Johnny D. Boggs tied the late Elmer Kelton with a record seventh Spur, this one for Return to Red River in the Mass-Market Paperback category. Published by Kensington’s Pinnacle imprint, the novel is a sequel to Borden Chase’s novel that was turned into the classic Western film “Red River” in 1948.

Since 1953, Western Writers of America has promoted and honored the best in Western literature with the annual Spur Awards, selected by panels of judges. Awards, for material published last year, are given for works whose inspiration, image and literary excellence best represent the reality and spirit of the American West.

The Apache Wars, subtitled The Hunt for Geronimo, The Apache Kid, and the Captive Boy Who Started the Longest War in American History, was published by Crown and is the sixth Spur won for the University of New Mexico history professor who frequently appears on TV documentaries.

Dusty Richards earned his third Spur, for The Mustanger and the Lady in the Traditional Western Novel. Richards’s novel is already in film production. A finalist in that category, News of the World by Paulette Jiles (William Morrow), is a National Book Award finalist.

New York Times best-selling mystery writer C.J. Box picked up his first Spur. Previously honored with the Edgar Alan Poe Award from Mystery Writers of America in 2009, the Western Heritage Wrangler Award from the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in 2016, and countless other awards, Box won in the Contemporary Western Novel for Off the Grid, one of his popular novels about Wyoming game warden Joe Pickett. Box’s first novel in that series, Open Season, was a Spur finalist in 2002.

The Best Western Biography Spur went to Joe Jackson for Black Elk: The Life of an American Visionary by Joe Jackson (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), the story of the Lakota holy man who became known to millions of readers around the world with the publication of John G. Neihardt’s Black Elk Speaks in 1932.

Michael Duchemin won in the Contemporary Nonfiction Book category for New Deal Cowboy: Gene Autry and Public Diplomacy (University of Oklahoma Press), which examines how Hollywood’s singing cowboy used public platforms to drum up support for President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal.

For best first books, Fernanda Santos won for nonfiction with The Fire Line: The Story of the Granite Mountain Hotshots and One of the Deadliest Days in American Firefighting (Flatiron Books) and James T. Hughes won for novel with Jasper Spring (Dog Ear Publishing).

The complete list of winners and finalists:
Historical Nonfiction
 The Apache Wars: The Hunt for Geronimo, The Apache Kid, and the Captive Boy Who Started the Longest War in American History by Paul Andrew Hutton (Crown)
Finalists: American Serengeti: The Last Big Animals of the Great Plains by Dan Flores (University Press of Kansas); The Earth is Weeping: The Epic Story of the Indian Wars for the American West by Peter Cozzens (Alfred A. Knopf)

 Black Elk: The Life of an American Visionary by Joe Jackson (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)
Finalists: Texas Ranger: The Epic Life of Frank Hamer, the Man Who Killed Bonnie and Clyde by John Boessenecker (Thomas Dunne Books); Nobody Rich or Famous: A Family Memoir by Richard Shelton (University of Arizona Press)

Contemporary Nonfiction
 New Deal Cowboy: Gene Autry and Public Diplomacy by Michael Duchemin (University of Oklahoma Press)
Finalists: The Fire Line: The Story of the Granite Mountain Hotshots and One of the Deadliest Days in American Firefighting by Fernanda Santos (Flatiron Books); Stories From Afield: Adventures with Wild Things in Wild Places by Bruce L. Smith (University of Nebraska Press)

Traditional Novel
The Mustanger and the Lady by Dusty Richards (Galway Press)
Finalists: The Contractor by James C. Work (Five Star Publishing); News of the World by Paulette Jiles (William Morrow)

Contemporary Novel
 Off the Grid: A Joe Pickett Novel by C.J. Box (G.P. Putnam’s Sons)
Finalists: Jasper Spring by James T. Hughes (Dog Ear Publishing); Hidden Star by Corinne Joy Brown (FriesenPress)

Mass-Market Paperback Novel
 Return to Red River by Johnny D. Boggs (Pinnacle)
Finalists: Widowmaker Jones by Brett Cogburn (Pinnacle); Frontier: Powder River by S.K. Salzer (Pinnacle)

Juvenile Nonfiction
 The Wolves of Currumpaw by William Grill (Flying Eye Books)
Finalists: Entertaining Women: Actresses, Dancers, and Singers in the Old West by Chris Enss (TwoDot); Sissy Bear at the Fort by Holly Arnold Kinney (Fur Trade Press)

Juvenile Fiction
 Trouble Returns: A Ruby & Maude Adventure by Nancy Oswald (Filter Press)
Finalists: The Green Colt: The Adventures of Wilder Good by S.J. Dahlstrom (Paul Dry Books); Saddle Up! by Donna Alice Patton and Emily Chase Smith (Chase Smith Press/Redwood Digital Publishing)

Storyteller (Illustrated Children’s Book)
 Seasons of the Bear: A Yosemite Story by author Ginger Wadsworth and illustrator Daniel San Souci (Yosemite Conservancy)
Finalists: Voices of the Western Frontier by author Sherry Garland and illustrator Julie Dupré Buckner (Pelican); Big Buckaroo Goes to the Special Olympics by author Rachelle “Rocky” Gibbons and illustrator Jason Hutton (Tate Publishing)

Short Nonfiction
Winner: “‘Master of Ceremonies’: The World of Peter Biggs in Civil War-Era Los Angeles” by Kendra Field and Daniel Lynch (Western Historical Quarterly)
Finalists: “Cowboys & Millionaires: How Teddy Roosevelt’s Rough Riders Bonded as Brothers Before Leaving to Fight in the Spanish-American War” by Mark Lee Gardner (True West Magazine); “Touching History: A Grandson’s Memories of Felix Marion Jones and the Massacre at Mountain Meadows” by Will Bagley (Utah Historical Quarterly)

Short Fiction
 “Odell’s Bones” by Troy D. Smith (Cane Hollow Press)
Finalists: “Comanche Camp at Dawn” by Johnny D. Boggs (Giacobbe Fritz Fine Art/Nocona Burgess); “Umpire Colt” by Johnny D. Boggs (High Hill Press)

 “Ain’t A Hermit” by Floyd Beard (self-published, produced by Butch Hause)
Finalists: “Ballad of a Basque Sheepherder: Shaniko, Oregon” by Matt Schumacher (Redbat Books); “Diamonds” by Ann Sochat (TwoDot)

 “Halfway Down The Devil’s Road” by Jim Jones and Allan Chapman (East Mountain Music)
Finalists: “Tularosa Rose” by Doug Figgs and Les Buffham (Slash DC Music); “The Cattleman” by Jeff Posey (Buckskin Friend Music)

Drama Screenplay
 Hell Or High Water by Taylor Sheridan (Film 44/OddLot Entertainment/Sidney Kimmel Entertainment/CBS Films)
Finalist: Desierto by Jonas Cuaron and Mateo Garcia (Esperanto Kino/ Itaca Films/CG Cinéma/STX Entertainment)

Documentary Script
 The Drift: An American Cattle Drive by Geoff O’Gara (The Content Lab)

First Nonfiction Book
 The Fire Line: The Story of the Granite Mountain Hotshots and One of the Deadliest Days in American Firefighting by Fernanda Santos (Flatiron Books)

First Novel
 Jasper Spring by James T. Hughes (Dog Ear Publishing)

No awards were given in the Historical Novel category.

WWA Ersfeld Symposium Presents Paths to Publication

DODGE CITY, Kansas – Five award-winning authors, including historian R. Eli Paul and novelist Max McCoy, will discuss writing about the American West in a two-day symposium scheduled Oct. 7-8 at the Dodge City Public Library.
James Ersfeld Memorial Symposiums were started in 2015 by the nonprofit Western Writers of America to encourage people in the writing field, with a focus on the Western genre. Western Writers of America, founded in the 1950s to promote and honor literature about the West, debuted the symposium, which features various subjects and authors, last year at the Denver Public Library. Additional programs have been held in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and Cheyenne, Wyoming.
The symposium is named after Ersfeld, Western Writers of America’s assistant director who died of cancer in 2011 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, at the age of 62.
In addition to Paul, author of Battle at Blue Water Creek and Eyewitness to Wounded Knee, and McCoy, other scheduled presenters for the Dodge City program include novelist Susan K. Salzer, and Melody Groves and Monty McCord, both of whom write fiction and nonfiction. Joining them for the opening session Oct. 7 is New York Times best-selling nonfiction writer Chris Enss.
“We encourage writers of all levels of experience to attend,” WWA executive director Candy Moulton said. “This is a chance to have one-on-one contact with some of the leading authors in the field of Western Literature who will provide insight and specific information to aid both new and established writers.”
The symposium is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. Oct. 7 with a “The Paths to Publication” panel in which the authors discuss how to write a good Western and how they got their own Westerns published. Enss will moderate.
A reception and book signing are scheduled after the panel.
Workshops follow on Oct. 8, beginning with two morning sessions (9:30-11:30 a.m.): McCoy’s “The Unexpected West, and What It Means to Your Writing” and Salzer’s “How to Bring Your (fictional) Characters to Life.”
McCoy will give tips on how to write a non-traditional Western. Salzer shows ways to make historical characters compelling and multifaceted.
Afternoon sessions (1-3 p.m.) are Paul’s “Opportunities in Western History, or ‘Not Another Custer Book!’” and Groves and McCord’s “So You Want to Get Published?”
Paul will show the best ways to research primary historical sources and online collections. . Groves and McCord will discuss dos and don’ts of writing, pitching and selling a fiction or nonfiction Western.
The Oct. 7 event at the Dodge City Public Library, 1001 N. Second Ave., is free. There is a $50 fee for all events associated with the Oct. 8 symposium. To register fill out the attached registration form (or obtain a copy of it by sending an email to: wwa.moulton@gmail.com.)

Pen & Ink, Voice and Strings – Echoes from the New Frontier

ENCAMPMENT, WY – Western Writers of America (WWA) has announced the release of a CD compilation featuring 14 contemporary songs from prominent Western songwriters and singers. Pen & Ink, Voice and Strings – Echoes from the New Frontier will be released at the organization’s convention in Cheyenne, WY, June 21-25. The recording features several Spur Award-winning compositions performed by many of today’s premier Americana singer-songwriters. In addition, many of the best-written Western songs of the recent past are included on the anthology.

WWA music CD anthology cover
“Our board of directors has been considering the production of a CD featuring the best in Western music since the inception of the Spur Award for Best Song in 2008,” WWA president Sherry Monahan said. “WWA represents Western writers of every type, and songwriting has quickly become one of the most popular genres to express Western-oriented themes.”
The CD’s formal launch is scheduled for Wednesday, June 22 at the organization’s Welcome to Wyoming reception, to be held at the iconic Nelson Museum of the West in downtown Cheyenne.
Each of the 14 artists represented on the CD, along with their songwriting partners, contributed their work to the project, with proceeds supporting Western Writers of America’s mission to promote the literature of the American West.
Produced by WWA member and Western author/songwriter Jon Chandler, the collection spans the Western experience in song. “Producing this recording was a gratifying experience,” Chandler said. “As we say in the liner notes, Western music is alive and well. We carefully listened to and enjoyed dozens, if not hundreds, of songs, all of which were strong contenders to be included. After song selection, I contacted each of the artists and explained that we wanted to present listeners with exceptional songs that were both literate and literary. Each was delighted to contribute their work to this unique collection.”
The CD kicks off with the powerful lament for native culture by songbird Juni Fisher, Still Here, the 2012 Spur Award winner written by Fisher and noted cowboy poet Waddie Mitchell. Mike Blakely’s 2008 Spur Award winner, The Last Wild White Buffalo, has all the elements of a rousing short story wrapped up in his distinctive lyrics and melody.
Dave Stamey contributed his modern classic, The Vaquero Song, an evocative, spiritual tribute to California’s Mexican roots. Jim Jones’s Texas is Burnin’ is a pulse pounding, rootsy take on Texas history that was a co-winner of the Spur Award in 2013. The late Chuck Pyle’s estate contributed his classic, Colorado, an appreciation of his adopted state. Chandler’s 2012 Spur Award winner Morning Star Moon examines the lure of Wyoming’s Hole in the Wall country.
Gary McMahan’s The Old Double Diamond is considered by many to be the finest Western song ever written, and his live version is spellbinding. The raucous rodeo tune, Hang-n-Rattle! by Wylie and the Wild West is the 2010 Spur Award winner, written by performer extraordinaire Wylie Gustafson and legendary cowboy poet Paul Zarzyski. A lively, lovely song of the Southwest, Sky Rock, was contributed by WWA member and troubadour Carol Markstrom.
Bill Barwick, the Voice of the West, penned and performs his quintessential Western anthem, There Ain’t No Quit. Western phenomenon Mary Kaye’s moody yet rowdy tribute to Butch Cassidy, Any Name Will Do, was a Spur Award co-winner in 2013.
Lost Time on the Old Highway, by the Mark Jackson Band, is Mark C. Jackson’s fine take on every Americana songwriter’s favorite subject – The Road. Doug Figgs and Todd Carter wrote Charlie & Evangeline, a timeless Western tale of misfortune and gunplay that was recorded by Figgs, winding up as a winner of the 2015 Spur Award.
The CD closes with a newly recorded theme song by prolific author, former NYC firefighter and WWA member Bill Groneman, a heartfelt acknowledgement to the organization titled Western Writers of America.

Lucia St. Clair Robson to Receive 2016 Owen Wister Award

ENCAMPMENT, Wyo. – Lucia St. Clair Robson, whose 1982 historical novel “Ride the Wind” won the Spur Award and remains in print 34 years after its publication, will receive the Owen Wister Award for Lifetime Contributions to Western Literature.

The award, given by Western Writers of America, as the nonprofit writers guild’s highest honor, will be presented during the organization’s annual convention June 25 in Cheyenne.

Ride the Wind tells the story of Cynthia Ann Parker, who was kidnapped by Comanche Indians as a child in Texas in 1836, married a Comanche leader and gave birth to a son, Quanah, who became the last chief of the Comanche Nation. A native of Florida, Robson wrote the novel while working as a public librarian in Maryland. She has followed that New York Times bestseller with eight other historical novels, including Ghost Warrior, about the Apache woman warrior Lozen, and Last Train From Cuernavaca, a 2010 Spur Award winner set during the Mexican Revolution.

“Lucia St. Clair Robson has a unique ability to immerse herself and her readers in unfamiliar cultures, which she brings to life with a rare accuracy and sensitivity,” said Kirk Ellis, the Emmy Award-winning writer of the HBO miniseries “John Adams” and incoming president of Western Writers of America. “Lucia matches unparalleled storytelling skills with a profound sympathy and understanding for people too often left on the margins of Western fiction. Her continued desire to explore uncharted territory makes her a worthy recipient of the WWA’s highest award.”

New Mexico authors to discuss ‘Landscape of Dreams’ in symposium at Collected Works

SANTA FE, N.M.Four New Mexico authors, including best-selling novelist Anne Hillerman and noted historian Paul Andrew Hutton, will discuss writing about the American West on Thursday, February 25, at Collected Works Bookstore & Coffeehouse in Santa Fe, NM.

Lesley Poling-Kempes and Jack Loeffler will also take part in “Landscape of Dreams: Santa Fe and the Creative West,” Western Writers of America’s second James Ersfeld Western Writing Symposium. The free event is scheduled to start at 6 p.m. at the bookstore, 202 Galisteo Street, Santa Fe, NM.

The four authors will share their thoughts on creativity, the lure of the West, fiction, nonfiction and music, and respond to audience comments and questions.

     The intent of the program is to encourage people in the writing field, with a focus on the Western genre. Western Writers of America, which was founded in the 1950s to promote and honor literature about the West, debuted the symposium, which features various subjects and authors, last year at the Denver Public Library.

Hillerman, the eldest of best-selling mystery author Tony Hillerman’s six children, grew up in Santa Fe and Albuquerque, surrounded by stories and beautiful landscapes. Her first novel, Spider Woman’s Daughter, debuted at No. 10 on the New York Times best-seller list. Her second book in the new series, Rock with Wings, and also made the NYT list and was recently released in paperback. Both are mysteries in the tradition of her father’s Navajo books.

Hutton is an American cultural historian, award-winning author, documentary writer and television personality. He is Distinguished Professor of History at the University of New Mexico. His latest book, The Apache Wars: The Hunt for Geronimo, the Apache Kid, and the Captive Boy Who Started the Longest War in American History, will be published by Crown in May.

Loeffler, aural historian, sound collage artist, writer, environmental activist and New Mexico resident for more than 50 years, is co-curating an exhibition on the history of counter-culture in the Southwest and beyond, scheduled to open at the New Mexico History Museum in 2017. His books include: Headed Upstream: Interviews with Iconoclasts; La Musica de los Viejitos; Adventures with Ed: A Portrait of AbbeyHealing the West: Voices of Culture and Habitat; Survival Along the Continental Divide; and Thinking Like a Watershed.

Poling-Kempes is the award-winning author of fiction and nonfiction books about the American Southwest. Her novel Bone Horses, received the 2014 WILLA Literary Award for Contemporary Fiction and the Tony Hillerman Award. Her latest nonfiction book, Ladies of the Canyon: A League of Extraordinary Women & Their Adventures in the American Southwest, was released in 2015 and has been nominated for the MPBA Reading the West nonfiction award.

     The symposium is named after Ersfeld, Western Writers of America’s assistant director who died of cancer in 2011 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, at the age of 62.

For more information, log on to CWBookstore.com or call Collected Works at (505) 988-4226.

Western Writers Hall of Fame Induction in Lubbock, Texas June 26

Win Blevins, this year’s Owen Wister Award honoree, joins a class of several distinguished writers who will become the first living writers to enter the Western Writers Hall of Fame.

Last year, the Homestead Foundation board of directors, which oversees the Western Writers Hall of Fame, voted to induct the Owen Wister Award recipient into the Hall of Fame, housed at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody, Wyoming.

Blevins is best known for his mountain man classic “Give Your Heart to the Hawks” and his novel of Crazy Horse, “Stone Song,” for which he won a Spur Award. His newest book is “The Darkness Rolling,” which he co-wrote with his wife Meredith Blevins.

Among the other inductees to the Hall of Fame this year are Judy Alter, Matt Braun, James A. Crutchfield, David Dary, Max Evans, Andrew J. Fenady, John Jakes, Leon C. Metz, N. Scott Momaday, Robert M. Utley, Dale L. Walker, Richard S. Wheeler and Jeanne Williams, all writers who have previously been recognized by WWA with either a Saddleman Award or a Wister Award (both given for lifetime achievement).

Also included in this year’s list of inductees are non-writers such as John Wayne, John Ford and Clint Eastwood.

Recently deceased Wister honorees not already in the Hall of Fame including Robert J. Conley, Fred Grove, Tony Hillerman, Elmer Kelton, Norman Zollinger, Jory Sherman, and David Lavender, will be posthumously inducted along with Edward Abbey who was voted into the Hall of Fame by the membership of Western Writers of America.

Other writers being recognized this year are S. Omar Barker, Bill Gulick, Dee Brown, Alvin Josephy Jr., Benjamin Capps, José Cisneros, Tom Lea, Elmore Leonard, Nelson Nye, Gordon Shirreffs and Don Worcester.

The induction ceremony will take place at the National Ranching Heritage Center in Lubbock, Texas, on June 26.

Among the other writers who already hold a place in the Hall of fame are Andy Adams, Eve Ball, B. M. Bower, Willa Cather, Samuel L. Clemens (Mark Twain), Peggy Simpson Curry, Bernard Devoto, J. Frank Dobie, Frederick Glidden (Luke Short), Helen Hunt Jackson, Wallace Stegner, John Steinbeck, and Laura Ingalls Wilder.

Western Writers of America to Meet in Lubbock, TX

The Texas Panhandle beckons Western writers and anyone who writes about the American West for the 2015 Convention in Lubbock, Texas, June 23-27.

During the week the association will pay tribute to the Spur Award winners and recognize the literary contributions of Win Blevins, winner of the 2015 Wister Award.

Western Historian Robert Utley, who is a past winner of the Wister Award and a 2015 inductee into the Western Writers Hall of Fame, will present a Keynote address.

History presentations at the convention include Buffalo Soldiers, the Alamo, Comanche Indians, and frontier ranch women. Other sessions will take place related to the craft of writing, book marketing, and research sources and techniques.

The convention tour will take convention participants to the American Wind Power Center and the Bayer Museum of Agriculture, plus the Southwest Collection at Texas Tech University.

The convention will take place at the Overton Hotel, 2322 Mac Davis Lane, Lubbock, Texas 79401.  It is not necessary to be a member of WWA to attend the convention.

Win Blevins to Receive 2015 Owen Wister Award

Win Blevins is the 2015 recipient of the Owen Wister Award for Lifetime Contributions to Western Literature. The award is given by Western Writers of America as its highest honor and will be presented during the organization’s annual convention in June in Lubbock, Texas.

The author of more than 30 books, including the Spur Award-winning novels Stone Song and So Wild a Dream, Blevins started his writing career as a music and drama reviewer for the Los Angeles Times. He then became the entertainment editor and principal theater and movie critic of the Los Angeles Herald-Examiner. His first book, Give Your Heart to the Hawks, was published in 1973 and since then he has made a living as a freelance writer. He has written articles for magazines and essays, and worked for 15 years as an editor at Macmillan Publishing and spent two years as Gaylord Family Visiting Professor of Professional Writing at the University of Oklahoma.

Blevins lives in Bluff, Utah, with his wife, mystery novelist Meredith Blevins, with whom he has written his newest novel, Moonlight Water, released in January by Forge Books.

His historical novels include the Rendezvous Series published by Tor-Forge Books, including So Wild a Dream (2003), Beauty for Ashes (2004), Dancing with the Golden Bear (2005), Heaven Is a Long Way Off (2006), A Long and Winding Road (2007) and Dreams Beneath Your Feet (2008). For the Rivers West series published by Bantam he wrote Powder River (1990), The Snake River (1992) and The High Missouri (1994).

Blevins also created, edited and co-published the series Classics of the Fur Trade, published by Mountain Press Publishing Company. This series included the two-volume The River of the West: The Adventures of Joe Meek by Frances Fuller Victor; Journal of a Mountain Man by James Clyman, Edward Warren by Sir William Drummond Stewart; The Personal Narrative of James O. Pattie by James Ohio Pattie; and The Long Rifle by Steward Edward White.

The Wister Award is a bronze statue of a buffalo created especially for Western Writers of America by artist Robert Duffie. It will be presented June 27.